Take an Iceland boat tour to see the best of the Land of Ice and Fire
While it’s better known for its glaciers and volcanoes, Iceland is a world of water. From the lagoons that have formed at the feet of ice caps to the country’s complex and captivating coastlines, there’s so much to explore.
Of course, the best way to see it all is by boat. On an Iceland boat tour, you’ll gain a different perspective on the Land of Ice and Fire and discover a world that’s busy with wildlife and spectacularly beautiful.
One of the most unmissable experiences in Iceland is a glacier lagoon boat tour. It’s an opportunity to explore the breathtaking scenery of a place like Jökulsárlón, the lagoon that has developed at the foot of a glacier in the Vatnajökull National Park. Here, icebergs drift across the calm waters, while seals can be seen frolicking around your boat.
There are many different Jökulsárlón Iceland boat tours available. Explore the lagoon on a Zodiac boat tour, allowing you to get deeper access into places visitors tend not to see. Or go literally at your own pace on a kayaking experience.
Alternatively, take to the seas on a RIB boat tour in Iceland. RIB boats are rigid inflatable boats, or small crafts that can take small groups at speed. They’re the perfect way to see Iceland’s coasts and islands up close. For example, visit black sand beaches, tour the Westman Islands, or go on a whale safari.
No winter trip to Iceland would be complete without seeing the aurora borealis. Out in the darkness of the ocean, northern lights boat tours are one of the best ways to see this unforgettable phenomenon.
Explore our tours to discover all your options. Whichever you choose, it’s an experience you’ll never forget.
You shouldn’t swim at Jökulsárlón. The pool is created by the melting of glacial ice and is therefore very cold. Simply, it’s not a safe place to swim.
The length of your Iceland glacier lagoon boat tour will depend on the type of tour you have chosen and some practical considerations, including transportation and where your tour starts.
You’ll spend about an hour on the boat itself, that’s whether you choose a classic amphibious boat tour, a Zodiac boat trip, or a kayaking experience.
We use a range of different vessels on our Iceland boat tours. For example, you can ride on an amphibious boat, which can be driven both on land and water. Or you can choose a tour on a rigid inflatable boat (RIB), which allows you to see Iceland’s wonders up close.
Alternatively, escape the crowds on a Zodiac inflatable boat, or try out a kayaking experience.
There are many opportunities for boating in Iceland. Take a tour of the Jökulsárlón glacier lagoon or visit the Westman Islands by boat. Jump on a kayak or search for whales on a wildlife tour.
However you want to visit Iceland’s coasts and lakes, you’ll find an option to suit you.
Zodiac boats are a type of small, inflatable boat, built to go faster and to access smaller areas than most other boats can. On a Zodiac boat tour in Iceland, you’ll see Jökulsárlón like few other visitors do.
In a small group, you’ll venture between the icebergs, speed across the water, and get away from the crowds. It’s a great way to visit the glacier lagoon.
Every boat trip in Iceland is different. Depending on the region you want to explore, you can choose between larger vessels, faster inflatable boats, or kayaking experiences.
Whichever you opt for, though, there are some things to bear in mind:
- You should come dressed for the outdoors. Whether you’re kayaking or hunting for the northern lights, you’re going to spend a lot of time outside. Dress appropriately, with warm layers, waterproofs, and hat and gloves.
- Don’t expect to swim. Iceland’s glacier lagoons are formed by melting ice, and as such they’re incredibly cold. You won’t want to swim here.
- Check out the individual tour pages for the lengths of each trip. Boat tours vary between just under an hour to 3 hours. Find out the details on individual tour pages.
- Bring your camera (unless you’re kayaking!). On an Icelandic boat tour, you’ll be exploring some of the most impressive sights in the country. Of course you’ll want to take photos. That said, If you’re kayaking, you do risk it getting wet.
If you need more information prior to your boat trip, feel free to get in touch with us. We’ll be happy to answer your questions.
The two things that you really need to see the northern lights in Iceland (and anywhere else) are clear skies and darkness. While being on a boat won’t make a difference to the former, there are fewer darker places than the centre of the ocean.
With little light pollution around you on a boat, you’ll have the chance to see the northern lights in full clarity. It’s really quite special.
Known as the crown jewel of Iceland, Jökulsárlón is one of the most breathtaking sights in the country. Simply, it’s a sight that you won’t find anywhere else, where icebergs float on the water against the backdrop of a crumbling glacier.
Don’t miss Jökulsárlón on your visit to Iceland. It’s truly unforgettable.
What to wear on your glacial lagoon tour will depend on what you’re getting up to and what season you’re visiting in.
That said, your main priority will be to stay warm. We recommend dressing in layers, so that you can take them off or put them on when you need to. Waterproof clothing is definitely recommended too, as Iceland’s weather can change very quickly.
We’ll handle the rest. For example, if you need an inflatable vest or drysuit, that will be included with the tour.
Jökulsárlón glacier lagoon is located on the south coast of Iceland, on the southern edge of the Vatnajökull National Park. From Reykjavík, it is a five-hour drive along Route 1, Iceland’s iconic ring road.
If you have hired a car in Iceland, driving is the best option for you to visit. However, if you can’t be bothered to drive, or you’re nervous about Iceland’s changing weather conditions, take a glacier lagoon tour. We’ll take you there and back, all within a day or as part of a larger trip along the south coast.
The glacier lagoons are the best places to see icebergs in Iceland. Head to Jökulsárlón, where icebergs can be seen floating on the glacial pool. Or visit Fjallsárlón, the smaller and lesser-known glacier lagoon.
These days, sea ice in Iceland is very rare, making these lagoons the most likely place to find icebergs.